On a visit to France in the summer of 1984 my partner and I were attracted to the small boutiques in many towns and villages throughout Provence that were filled with the wonderful things this area is known for: bubble bath and shower gels infused with the sensual fragrances that come from the area, body lotions scented with lavendar and lemon verbena, hard-milled soaps produced by small family owned businesses using ancient methods and pure natural ingredients, colognes and perfumes in a myriad of fragrances, and an endless mix of locally produced pottery, fabrics, food items, hand blown glassware; the list goes on. We immediately fell in love with the countryside of Provence and the things we found in the shops. As we boarded the plane to return home, suitcases bulging with purchases, a discussion ensued about how much many of our friends and neighbors were missing by not being able to go on a similar shopping spree. Before the plane landed back in Houston we had made the decision that we would create a shop and fill it with the same products we had just discovered in France.
We had barely unpacked our lavender soaps, cinnamon orange bath gel, lemon verbena body cream and other delightful souvenirs when we found ourselves back on Air France en route to Provence to locate sources of these great products to bring back to the US in larger quantities. We arrived there in the fall of 1984 to a brilliant autumn day in the hilly terrain of Haute Provence. We visited Forcalquier, Manosque, Gordes, and Grasse. We went on to St Remy, Les Baux, Avignon and Marseille. Once the products were selected and arrangements made with the various artisans we returned to Houston to create the little shop to be called La Taste and to give it a look as close to the original in Provence as we could. The name was borrowed from an old Provencal phrase "juste per la taste"--just a taste. The “a” in La Taste rhymes with the “a” in father or ahhh.
We opened our tiny shop in May of 1985 and have made these wonderful artisanally produced products available to our delighted customers since that time. We would now love to make them available to you as well.